How To Play Xbox Games On Oculus Quest


Yep. You really can play Xbox games on your Oculus Quest. However, sadly, it is no longer as simple as it used to be. In the past, Microsoft went all-in on VR streaming. Nowadays? They have ditched it. As a result, you won’t be able to use the Oculus app on anything other than the Oculus Rift. Still, don’t fret. You have other options available to you. They are just a bit more cumbersome.

The easiest way to get an Oculus Quest streaming is to connect your Xbox up to your Windows computer. You can then use the virtual desktop feature to cast it over to the Oculus Quest. Alternatively, you can side-load the Game Pass app onto your Oculus Quest. However, this will take a lot more effort and has a couple of downsides.

On this page, we want to run you through the various ways that you can get your Oculus Quest and Xbox games playing. We are also going to walk you through how you can deal with any issues that may occur. Although thankfully, there shouldn’t be too many of them. Not if you follow our instructions, at least.

How To Play Xbox Games On Oculus Quest Using Virtual Desktop

For this method, you are going to need the following:

  • An Oculus Quest
  • An Xbox (anything from the Xbox One onward)
  • A computer running Windows 10
  • An Xbox controller. It can be wireless but doesn’t need to be.
  • Ownership of games
  • The Virtual Desktop app on your Oculus Quest.

Got all of that? Tremendous! Let’s walk you through, step-by-step, how to do this.

Install The Virtual Desktop App

To start with, you are going to need to ensure that both your computer are on the same Wi-Fi network. If they aren’t, this won’t work.

First, install the Virtual Desktop app on your Oculus Quest. Now head on over to the Virtual Desktop website and download the software there. Make sure it is running on your computer.

Now you can head back to your Oculus Quest and load the app up. It will walk you through, step-by-step, how to connect the Virtual Desktop app up to your computer. By the end of this, you should be able to see your desktop through your Oculus Quest.

Does the Oculus Quest 2 Come with G...
Does the Oculus Quest 2 Come with Games?

Install Xbox Console Companion On Your Computer

This may already be pre-installed. If you use the search bar on your desktop, you may be able to find it. Don’t worry if you can’t. It isn’t really all that difficult to track down.

If you don’t have the Xbox Console Companion app, then head to the Windows Store on your computer and download it from there. It isn’t a large file, so it should be a rather small upload.

Once it has been downloaded, run it.

Enable Streaming On Your Xbox One 

Next, we need to get streaming running on your Xbox One. This part is easy. The process is the same if you have the Xbox Series S/X.

  • Press the Xbox button on your controller (the middle button)
  • Select “Profile; System”
  • Head to ‘Settings’
  • Select “Devices; Connections”
  • Select “Remote Features”
  • Select ‘Enable Remote Features’
  • In the settings, look for Power. Select ‘Instant-On’.

Now open up the Xbox app on your computer. Select the button that looks like an Xbox console. It is next to the search bar.

Select the Xbox that you want to stream from.

Once a game is playing, you should be able to see it on the screen.

Connect Your Controller

You will need to connect an Xbox controller to your PC. It can be wired or wireless. We prefer wireless. It works a little bit better with an Oculus Quest.

Put Your Headset On 

Once you have verified that the virtual desktop works and the game streaming works, put on your headset, and you are now ready to roll!

How To Xbox Games On Oculus Quest Without Owning An Xbox 

Did you know that you can actually play on the Oculus Quest without owning an Xbox? There are actually two routes here. This is the first, and in the next section, we will discuss the other route.

For this, you will need the following:

  • Virtual Desktop app
  • Xbox Game Pass Ultimate Subscription
  • Xbox controller

Once you have an Xbox Game Pass subscription, head to www.xbox.com/play

You will now be able to play any of the cloud games on Xbox Game Pass.

You can stream it to your Oculus Quest in the same way as with the virtual desktop method in the previous section.

Do bear in mind that this is not for games that you own. Unless they are labeled as Cloud and are on Xbox Game Pass, you won’t be able to play them on your Oculus Quest. However, it is likely that this is going to change in the future. We just need to wait for the technology to take off a little bit more. 

How To Play Xbox Games On Oculus Quest Using The Game Pass App

This method will allow you to play Xbox games on your Oculus Quest without needing to be hooked up to your computer all of the time. However, do bear in mind that you will need to hook up to your computer to get this method working.

We do want to point out that there are risks to using this method. The app that you are side-loading will also not auto-update. You are essentially bypassing the Oculus Quest store here. If you do this wrong, then you are potentially exposing your Oculus Quest to issues.

For this method, you will need the following:

  • SideQuest downloaded onto your computer
  • A computer
  • An Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription

You do not need an Xbox One controller for this. You will be able to use the controllers that you have with the Oculus Quest. However, they may not work perfectly. If you want the Oculus Quest to work the best possible way while playing Xbox games, then you will need to purchase an Xbox One controller. This will then need to be connected via Bluetooth to your Oculus Quest. Yes. The standard Oculus Quest controller will work, but do bear in mind that the button match-up may not be exactly the same.

Switch To Oculus Quest To Developer Mode

You will need to start by registering as a developer for Oculus Quest. Don’t worry; this is free. Head to this link.

Now you need to head to the Oculus app on your mobile device. Make sure that it is connected to your Oculus Quest:

  • Open settings
  • Select the Oculus Quest
  • Click the arrow next to the device and select ‘More Settings’
  • Turn developer mode on
  • Restart your Oculus Quest

Download SideQuest

The next job is to download SideQuest.

Install it onto your computer.

You will now want to connect the Oculus Quest via USB to your computer, with SideQuest running. An option will appear on your Oculus Quest that says “enable USB debugging”. Make sure that this is turned on.

Download The Xbox Game Pass APK

Next, look for the Xbox Game Pass APK online. It shouldn’t be too difficult. Make sure that the site that you are downloading from is reputable (i.e., do not click one of those random gibberish links that you all too often find in Google)

Move The Xbox Game Pass APK To Your Oculus Quest

With the Xbox Game Pass APK downloaded, you need to get it into your Oculus Quest.

Click the link in SideQuest that says “Install APK from folder”, or words to that effect (it changes between SideQuest updates)

Select your Xbox Game Pass APK and wait for the installation to complete.

Play Games

Once the installation is complete, you can open up the Xbox Game Pass app on your Oculus Quest. Sign in to your Xbox account and look for the ‘Cloud Streaming’ option.

You can now play away!

Remember, this will not be in full VR, and you will need to have a stable internet connection to be able to use the Cloud Streaming functions. This means that you will not be able to use your mobile data connection to keep connected. 

Why Is Xbox Game Streaming Not Working On Your Oculus Quest?

If you have followed the instructions here, then you should have absolutely no issues streaming your Xbox games on your Oculus Quest. However, there are some issues that you may encounter. Here are the quickest ways to deal with them.

Oculus Quest Not Connecting To PC

This is often going to be the quickest issue to fix. It generally means that your Oculus Quest and the PC are not on the same Wi-FI network. Make sure that they are.

If they are connected to the same WI-Fi network, then make sure that there is no interference with the Wi-Fi connection. This means that you shouldn’t have too many devices connected to it at once. You should also ensure that there is nothing metal hanging around the Wi-FI router. This can really hamper the connection.

You may also want to give the router a restart to see if that helps.

Honestly, here, it is less a case of diagnosing the Oculus Quest and your computer. It is more a case of fixing your internet connection.

Your Xbox Does Not Stream To Your PC

If you do not have Instant-On turned on with your Xbox, then it is never going to be able to stream to your PC. It doesn’t matter how hard you try.

You are able to switch Instant-On on through the Xbox settings. 

Laggy Game Stream

If you have a laggy game stream and you are streaming straight from your Xbox, then chances are that the Wi-Fi connection is suffering from interference, or there are too many devices connected to it at once.

If you are using Xbox Game Pass cloud streaming, then your internet connection probably isn’t fast enough to deal with it. Sadly, you need a pretty fast connection for cloud streaming, and there are still many locations in the United States and around the world where it is not going to be working properly.

Unresponsive Controls On The Xbox

Unresponsive controls are likely caused by a Wi-Fi network issue. The same information applies here as if you had a laggy game stream.

In rare cases, there may be an issue with the Bluetooth connection between your headset and the controller. However, since the headset and the controller are going to be pretty close to one another anyway, we doubt that this is really going to be a problem.

Game Stream Appears Pixelated 

If the game stream is not laggy, then it may be pixelated. This is something that only happens if you are using the Cloud Streaming service on Xbox Game Pass.

Because of the way game streaming works, there is a dynamic resolution. If the game stream is too laggy, then the service will automatically switch down the resolution. This creates that pixelated look.

Pretty much the only thing you can do here is to ensure that the Wi-Fi connection is as good as it possibly can be. If the pixelation never stops, then there is a pretty strong chance that your internet connection isn’t quite good enough to play Xbox games on the Oculus Quest. You will need to use the standard streaming option, which means that you will need to own an Xbox One.

Conclusion

While there are far fewer options than before for connecting your Xbox to the Oculus Quest, it is still possible. You may just have to jump through a few extra hoops. If you own an Xbox, then you can use the virtual desktop app on your PC and stream like that. If you do not own an Xbox, then you will need to use the Xbox Game Pass app that allows cloud streaming. Although, do bear in mind that the game selection is restricted there. You will also need a good internet connection.

Steven Carr

Steven is a certified IT professional and gaming enthusiast. He has been working in the tech industry for over 10 years, and specializes in all things Tech-related. When he's not geeking out over the latest hardware or software release, he can be found testing out the latest video game.

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